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Pathometabolism of Intracellular Bacteria

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Metabolic adaptation is a key feature of pathogenic bacteria interacting with host organisms, especially when these pathogens replicate inside their host cells. As a result of this adaptation process, the metabolic pathways and fluxes in the pathogen, but also in the host are modulated to the benefit or ...

Metabolic adaptation is a key feature of pathogenic bacteria interacting with host organisms, especially when these pathogens replicate inside their host cells. As a result of this adaptation process, the metabolic pathways and fluxes in the pathogen, but also in the host are modulated to the benefit or disfavor for the partners. For this complex metabolic interplay, the term “pathometabolism” has been coined. For example, intracellular pathogens like Listeria monocytogenes, Legionella pneumophila, Francisella tularensis, Chlamydia trachomatis or Shigella flexneri are known to specifically adapt their nutrient usages, the metabolic pathways and fluxes to the various environments encountered during their infection processes. On the other hand, the metabolic processes of the respective host cells also seem to be changed during infections with these bacteria, when the pathogens efficiently retrieve host nutrients during their replication. However, the knowledge of metabolic adaptation during bacterial infections is still limited and only sketchy. This is unsatisfactory since metabolic adaptation is central to understand bacterial infections in general on a molecular/metabolic level. Moreover, it can be expected that hitherto unexplored bacterial and host cell targets are among the components involved in pathometabolism. With this research topic, we want to provide a platform for recent results in the exciting and emerging field of metabolic adaption during bacterial infections. Original research or review articles addressing metabolic adaptation in host-pathogen interactions and innovative technical developments to analyze these interactions are welcome. Areas of interest include but are not limited to: intracellular bacterial pathogens; metabolic adaptation of pathogens to specific host niches and compartments; metabolic adaptation of host cells upon infections; regulation of these processes; and advances in the methods to analyze and compute metabolic pathways and fluxes.


Keywords: Metabolism, intracellular pathogens, metabolic adaptation, pathometabolism, nutritional virulence


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